JOIN US for the first annual Georgia GAL Advanced Training & Retreat at the beautiful King & Prince Resort in St. Simons Island, Georgia!

September 9-11, 2022

This is a unique opportunity to escape the stress of your GAL work and lean into the relaxation of the island. We will combine valuable learning with opportunities for socializing and rest. Allow yourself to be pampered and educated in one fabulous weekend!


Whether you drive in the day before, and settle in your room Thursday evening, or arrive bright and early Friday morning, you will be greeted with the signature hospitality of the island.

FRIDAY, September 9th

Friday will begin with a continental breakfast as we greet and get to know each other. Our featured speaker is Dr. Benjamin Garber, a New Hampshire licensed psychologist, a former Guardian ad litem, and a parenting coordinator. He works with the courts in several distinct roles to educate, evaluate and intervene in the best interests of children. Dr. Garber has served as an expert witness in a number of states, and his experience includes international Hague Convention matters, Daubert arguments against “parental alienation syndrome,” the critique and review of Guardian ad litem, and as a custody evaluator. He has authored several books, including:

His most recent co-authored book is a field guide for family law professionals, entitled High-Conflict Litigation: Dynamics not Diagnoses, published by the American Bar Association.

Friday lunch and evening dinner will be on your own at one of the more than 50 restaurants on the island.

SATURDAY, September 10th

Saturday morning will begin with a wonderful Breathe, Stretch & Relax session on the beach, provided by SSI’s own Omcore Yoga & Body — followed by a continental breakfast at the resort. After breakfast, a variety of topics will be covered throughout the day, including:

  • Latest Child Cusotdy Research & Case Law
  • Effects of Personal Biases in GAL Work
  • Resist & Refuse Dynamics in Child Cusotdy Cases
  • Understanding Co-Parenting Interventions
  • Risks/Benefits of Various Parenting Plan Arrangements
  • Establishing Rapport with a Child: Getting to the Heart of the Matter!
  • High Conflict Personalities and Other Mental Health Issues
  • Self-Care to Prevent GAL Burn-Out

Lunch on Saturday will be provided by the resort, featuring their award winning cuisine. Dinner will be on your own again as you explore the beauty of St. Simons and take a stroll along its gorgeous coastline.

SUNDAY, September 11th

Sunday morning will start off again with a Breathe, Stretch & Relax session, followed by a delicious King & Prince breakfast buffet. During our breakfast time, members of the retreat committee will share with the group their ideas for GALs in Georgia. We will invite comments, brainstorming, and feedback.

Mid-morning will feature a panel of judges for Q&A and information about how they use GALs in their courtrooms.

Earn CLEs!

CLEs (11 pro1fessionalism) have been approved by ICLE and are included in the conference fee.


There can be no keener revelation of a society’s soul than the way in which it treats its children.

Nelson Mandela